Thursday, October 25, 2007

Another paragraph

Writing has really come to take priority in my life these days... it is great! Yes, I work under a few deadlines, but the majority of what I write is not longer academic... I get to create stories (whether creatively, or journalistically... that word is made up) --------------------- I remember meeting him at one of these early morning rituals. Two careless kids, splashing in the shallow waves, stealing the littlest fishes out of the nets as the men struggled to pull them ashore. The little fish are so transparent, you can see the blue veins connected to the terrified eye socket, and through it’s flesh you see shadows of your own fingers. We would throw these delicate creatures into the air, and laughed at the gulls and pelicans that plunged after our offering, often tearing the meal from each other’s mouths. --------------------- It is fascinating to me how things get created... things you read that flow, flow because they were POUNDED with hammers and agonized over by some poor soul. It is an artificial process needed to create a genuine feeling. I am learning to be a much better reader, as well. Today we had a lecture about the future of newspapers. Don't be surprised if three years down the road, your newspaper is a sheet of soft plastic. A bendable flash memory you stick in a slot each morning and evening, that populates itself with an interactive front page. Wouldn't readership go up? Everybody loves their gadgets. It is always interesting to think about the future when you are in first year of university. The nature of the system is that you study the past, apply it to the preset, but the future... that field is wide open for speculation! And you are young and so anxious to GET there... imagining is nice. Personally, I was impressed in the lecture today by the need for a good photo. Good stories do not make the cover unless they have a good image to go with. This is the nature of information in a society that relies so much on images (being in a film class simultaneously to all this journalism talk really fleshes ideas like that out). Things are interesting in life right now, you know.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

First paragraph of a new story

Why is rewriting so painful? The part of me that writes just wants to write and deliver, write and deliver. That is why emails are so evil and consuming of creativity... they demand it in droves, and I can get away with sending the babies of writing away with no primping, minimum correction. How tempting! When really, writing anything that is actually good starts out as fun, and becomes WORK: scary work, because what if I don't find every error? What if I can't think of how to fix an imperfection? Oh, rewriting is not fun: I am compelled to write, obligated to rewrite. Obligated by the true spirit of any story or idea I have in mind... the first draft is rarely adequate. I am so impatient, I often settle for a less-than-perfect version. So, here is a paragraph. Some of it has been worked over a lot, some of it has only been written once or twice. So be gentle! --------------------------------------- Our lives are the ocean. We dream at sea and must live on land. We sleep cradled by the rhythm of waves, the damp salty sheets and the savory air, but wake to the church bells, the roosters, and traffic. The buses roll past and raise the dust on our narrow road that runs along the coastline and tilts to the west. Old Thomas built models, Canada sends them to our cities when they are too old for Canada, and the cities send them to us when they get too old for them. Local welders with artistic vision torch new life out of tired parts. They gut the carcasses to fit more rows of seating: more rows, more 25 cent fares. On the trip to the market, we lean left. On the trip home, we clutch out full bags and try not to fall on the neighbour to our right. It's a rough, violent ride. --------------------------------------- Sorry, I can't allow myself anymore. I just haven't re-written enough! This is very indulgent of me, very foolish, to publish something before it is really alive. Oh well, it has been a while since I've written at all.